A 21-Year-Old Man Died After Alleged Abuse In Kedah Prison. Here's All You Need To Know

He reportedly told his mother and girlfriend every week that he was beaten up by prison wardens.

Cover image via Malaysian Tamilar Kural/Google Maps (edited)

21-year-old Gopal Krisnan Rajalinggam, who was in custody at the Sungai Petani Prison, died yesterday, 30 July

Gopal Krisnan Rajalinggam

Image via Malaysian Tamilar Kural/Facebook

Free Malaysia Today reported Seberang Perai councillor David Marshel as saying that Gopal passed away at 2.30pm yesterday.

The 21-year-old was had been receiving treatment for an unspecified ailment since last Wednesday, 24 July. 

Gopal had been in remand after being arrested for a drug offence in Penang over two months ago

"Gopal was remanded in Sungai Petani after he was arrested... on 12 May," David, who is also president of local NGO Malaysian Tamilar Kural, was quoted as saying by Malaysiakini

"He was in remand while waiting for his next case mention," David added. 

Prior to his death, Gopal's family found him wounded and unconscious when they visited him in the hospital

Malaysiakini reported Gopal's family as saying that there were wounds on his arms, and parts of his body were swollen. 

While the 21-year-old never had any health problems before his arrest, the family was told by doctors that he had a lung infection. 

"He never woke up, and died yesterday," David said, according to Malaysiakini. The councillor added that Gopal told his mother and girlfriend about being beaten up by wardens during their weekly visits to prison.

The man's fiancée has since lodged a police report over his death

20-year-old Navamallika Tan Sze Lin lodged a report at the Kuala Muda police headquarters yesterday, reported Malaysiakini. 

"Gopal was crying when he told us that he was hit in the head," Tan said in her report, according to Free Malaysia Today. 

The woman was recounting her visit to the Sungai Petani prison on 4 June, together with Gopal's mother.

"He had also told the wardens that he was feverish and was throwing up... The wardens then told Gopal to roll on a tarred road because they did not believe he was ill," she added.

Kuala Muda district police chief Adzly Abu Shah has confirmed the receipt of Tan's report.

Nonetheless, the police have ruled out foul play in Gopal's death

"The outcome of the post mortem was that there were no external injuries on the victim, and that there were no foul play to his death," Adzly was quoted as saying by The Malaysian Insight

He added that the man was found to have died from bacterial infection of the heart valve.

The district police chief confirmed that a post mortem on the 21-year-old was conducted by a forensic expert at the Sultanah Bahiyah Alor Setar Hospital today. 

Earlier this month, a Nigerian PhD student died in the Bukit Jalil detention centre:

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